Do Tell: The Early Years by Don B. Dale


      PATIENCE -- The Essential Virtue.
                  by Genghis Khan

      WEALTH -- If possessed greatly by man, he may find
          himself possessed by the wealth.
                  from the Bible

      ACTION -- What is done is Judged!
                  by El Donado

Herewith....I bestow and bequeath the ensuing deathless pages to my time-honored friends and other dissipaters who have reached the age of life where the ineffable words herein -- will comfort and solace them in their remaining ordeal of life to be lived in repentance wherever they reside.


We've been blessed, doubly so, with two beautiful children. Of our two daughters, the oldest is about to finish high school and begin a college education -- at this point in a medically related area. The youngest is in grade school and has begun to ask the question, "Dad what kind of work do you think I can do when I grow up?"

I'm trying to remember back to when I was nine and in the fourth grade. As I recall my teacher was Roma Dove. We used to diagram sentences by the hour, which is something that doesn't seem to be in vogue nowadays. The school, Jones Elementary, is easily remembered as it was named after Buffalo Bill Jones, an early plains settler who I assumed got his name from shooting buffalo, but was always remembered by me for the 100+ year old cottonwood trees he planted that lined the street (old Highway 50) in front of our home.

I'm writing this story, not to provide guidance or solace for others who find themselves in the same predicaments, but as a series of notes and reflections for my children covering what I remember of my earlier life, those "formulative years" and buyond. They may see a similarity between their situations and some of the personal lessons I learned when their age, mistakes that were made, and perhaps actions taken or things left undone which we, as parents, have neglected thus far to pass on to them. Previous silence on any matters contained herein may have been by design, for protective reasons, or because the example provided, while not necessarily negative, might be misconstrued if not properly presented.

Before venturing too much furrther it might help the reader to point out that the pronoun "I" is used throughout, sometimes interchangeably with we. This is especially true when deflecting blame for some long past sibling act, in which case "we" is used to share the responsibility of a once forgotten transgression participated in with one of my siblings (we were 5) or with a schoolboy chum. In the plural context, we allows me to bask in shared glory for the outstanding achievement we've accomplished in rasing two outstanding children. My role in all this maybe profoundly and unmercifully debated and dismissed, but after-all as the author, like Shakespeare, there's an entitlement to some poetic license.

Where certain incidences or facts of an historical nature are recalled it might be remembered that age and time have a way of blurring the edges and leaving behind memories more conducive to pleasant dreams and colorful stories for giving children an insight into human nature and for providing understandable benchmarks of conduct that may help and guide them, even if with simple laughter, as they grow into adulthood.

                    El Donado

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